Health Issues: Osteoporosis – Bone Loss
Osteo means ‘bone’ and porosis means ‘porous’. Osteoporosis is a disease in which the bones become extremely porous or brittle, are subject to fracture, and heal slowly. There may be a number of reasons for the disease, but the two most common causes are:
(i) Hormonal changes in women during the menopause and,
(ii) calcium loss due to some medical condition or medication.
We all know that in our body there is a continuous process of replacing old and worn out cells with newly formed cells. This process is governed by some specific hormones namely, estrogen in women and testosterone in men. At the time of the menopause in women the level of estrogen drops, resulting in the calcium deficiency disease ‘osteoporosis’. The same thing happens in men as they age. Osteoporosis occurs when the rate of bone loss exceeds the rate of bone formation.
As a direct result of continuous bone loss, a person can become shorter and remains at a high risk of sustaining multiple fractures. It is a crippling and painful disease which can change the lives of the people it affects.
Studies have concluded that prevention is the most important step and that women of all ages should be encouraged to take enough supplemental calcium daily and do regular weight bearing exercises. Apart from this, smoking and drinking too much alcohol as well as an inactive life style, should be avoided.